Songkran is the celebration of the new year in Thailand which occurs when the sun transits the constellation Aries, the first sign in the Zodiac. More so now, the date is fixed and can be celebrated on different dates throughout the region. We just ended our Songkran festival in Bangkok and Pattaya’s (about 2 hours south) celebration is just beginning. A typical New Year greeting: สวัสดีปีใหม่ (sawatdi pi mai). Throughout Bangkok there were street celebrations, big and small, that included dousing people with water and annointing them with chalk. Of course there was plenty of food and beer to be had.
The historical significance of the water is the cleansing of the mind, body and spirit and the chalk represents blessings as in the blessings given by monks. It used to be that you would cleanse Buddhas, visit monks and feed them and even “spring clean” your home. These days though it is just one big party.
We had a blast celebrating Songkran on Silom Road – one of Bangkok’s biggest celebrations. We went armed with water guns and had a ball. It reminded me of Time Square on December 31st – except it was daytime, hot and there was a lot of water to cool us down.
For those of you wondering where Carter is in all of my pictures, he is chosing not to have his picture taken or not participating in the event. He is alive and well – I assure you. I am just trying to respect his privacy which is a pretty hard thing to do. He is so cute, I would love nothing more than to plaster him all over the place. Also, we will not have internet until Friday. So be patient with sparse posting.